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July 24: Letters to the Editor

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 04:00

Mess beyond border

The illegals at the border are just the latest of President Obama’s fiascoes (“Ruthless smugglers cash in on wave of illegal immigrants,” July 23).

Looking back, it seems that there were two camps in the 2008 and 2012 elections. One said that electing Obama would heal racial wounds in America, improve our economy by putting people back to work and alleviate the tensions that had built up between the U.S. and our friends and allies around the world under President Bush.

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Editorial: Veto the expansion

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 04:00

The first lie in the final bill authorizing a $1 billion expansion of the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center comes on the very first page, where lawmakers declare enactment of the bill an “emergency.”

Yes, we know, it’s boilerplate language that simply ensures the bill takes effect the day it’s signed. But it is in keeping with the idea that this entire expansion effort has been built around a massive exaggeration — and rests on the flimsiest foundation.

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Editorial: Progress on Beacon Hill

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 04:00

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh took an admirable stand last week, notifying the Beacon Hill gentry in no uncertain terms that the city is moving forward to upgrade neighborhood sidewalks to accommodate individuals with disabilities. But some residents continue to place the charming neighborhood’s, well, charm over the needs of individuals who can’t walk or can’t see. Yes, really.

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Goldberg: Entering dying days of financial reform?

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 04:00

It was a really nice try.

Heritage Action (the activist arm of the conservative Heritage Foundation) invited U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren to speak at an event dedicated to phasing out the Export-Import Bank. The Ex-Im, as it’s known inside the Beltway, has become a favorite target of populist forces on the right.

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Peterson: Gang members need more than a job

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 04:00

The city of Boston should not be in the business of “hugging thugs.”

But that’s what we will be doing if Mayor Marty Walsh has his way with a new summer partnership with local unions that will offer employment to the city’s toughest gang members.

It’s an idea that defies common sense. It is also an insult to affected communities whose responsibility it is to support values that foster public safety without the heavy hand — or watchful eye — of the police.

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This time, Obama fundraising is a bit of 'Scandal'

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 01:52

LOS ANGELES — Fact met fiction Wednesday in one of those Hollywood ways: The real-life president of the United States complains about "phony scandals" in the presence of the producer and the star of a hit TV drama about indignity and dishonor among Washington's political elite.

Fundraising in Beverly Hills, President Barack Obama told about 450 Democratic Party contributors at the home of "Scandal" producer Shonda Rhimes that such controversies distract from the business of governing. Among those listening was series star Kerry Washington.

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Hall of Famer Jim Brown sues over 1964 title ring

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 01:32

NEW YORK — Hall of Fame football star Jim Brown — running out of time to retrieve his 1964 NFL championship ring — has sued a memorabilia dealer.

The 78-year-old Los Angeles resident filed the lawsuit Tuesday in Manhattan federal court against Lelands.com and Lelands Collectibles Inc.

The lawsuit seeks to halt the sale of the ring in an online auction that ends Friday. It also seeks unspecified damages over broadcast remarks that Lelands' founder, Joshua Evans, made about Brown.

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Jury reaches no verdict in Ventura defamation case

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 00:52

ST. PAUL, Minn. — There's still no verdict as jurors try to decide whether a decorated military sniper libeled former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura in his best-selling memoir.

Jurors deliberated from about 9 a.m. until about 4 p.m. Wednesday before leaving the federal courthouse in St. Paul. They received the case around noon Tuesday.

The jury has posed two questions to the judge. The subjects and answers haven't been disclosed.

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Seattle police: Homeless ticketed most for pot

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 00:43

SEATTLE — An analysis of the first six months of Seattle police enforcement under new marijuana laws finds homeless people and African-American males are more likely to be ticketed for public pot use than anyone else.

Officers issued 82 tickets for public possession and use between Jan. 1 and June 30, according to the report released Wednesday. Most of the citations were issued in public parks in the downtown core, where some homeless people hang out. One person was ticketed twice.

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Casualty numbers raise questions about Gaza war

Latest from the Boston Herald - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 00:05

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Shopkeepers say they were sitting outside their shuttered businesses Wednesday, catching a break from being cooped up during wartime, when an Israeli missile struck a nearby mosque, killing a truck driver and wounding 45 people.

One of those wounded by shrapnel said from his hospital gurney that the strike came without warning.

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Document: Man tied to gun said 'bomber' his friend

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 23:32

BOSTON — Details emerged Wednesday on another friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev who may have been linked to events surrounding the deadly attack, this one a high school classmate tied to a gun used to kill a university policeman during a manhunt for Tsarnaev and his brother.

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Massachusetts House approves abortion clinic bill

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 23:26

BOSTON — The Massachusetts House approved a bill on Wednesday designed to tighten security around abortion clinics.

The bill would let police disperse one or more individuals who are substantially impeding access to a clinic. After a dispersal order is issued in writing, those individuals would have to stay at least 25 feet from the clinic's entrances for up to eight hours.

The 25-foot boundary would have to be clearly marked and the regulations posted in public.

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Cheaper wireless plans cut into AT&T 2Q profit

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 22:32

NEW YORK — AT&T Inc. on Wednesday posted lower net income for the latest quarter due to cheaper cellphone plans it introduced as a response to aggressive pricing from smaller competitor T-Mobile US.

AT&T said half of its wireless subscribers have already moved to "Mobile Share Value" plans, introduced in February. It's also adding subscribers to its Next plans, which carry lower monthly fees because customers pay full price for their phones.

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Facebook 2Q earnings, revenue soar

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 22:16

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Facebook is on a roll. The world's largest online social network posted sharply higher earnings on Wednesday as revenue from mobile advertising continued to grow, and more people used it, more often.

The company's shares climbed nearly 4 percent in extended trading after the results came out, signaling that they could hit a record high when the stock market opens on Thursday. Investors who bought — and held on to — Facebook stock during the company's initial public offering two years ago are now close to doubling their money.

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Audit: NASA doesn't have the money for big rockets

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 21:56

WASHINGTON — NASA doesn't have enough money to get its new, $12 billion rocket system off the ground by the end of 2017 as planned, federal auditors say.

The Government Accountability Office issued a report Wednesday saying NASA's Space Launch System is at "high risk of missing" its planned December 2017 initial test flight. The post-space shuttle program would build the biggest rockets ever — larger than the Saturn V rockets which sent men to the moon — to send astronauts to asteroids and Mars.

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Sketch of suspect in peacock killing released

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 21:49

RANCHO PALOS VERDES, Calif. — Officials have released a sketch of a man suspected of shooting and killing a peacock from his Mercedes-Benz earlier this month in Southern California.

An eyewitness reported the man shot the exotic bird with a pellet gun July 9 on the Palos Verdes Peninsula, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles said in a statement Tuesday.

Witnesses said the bird was standing in a driveway and the man fired from the driver's seat of the silver Mercedes sedan.

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2 bombs kill at least 39 in Kaduna, north Nigeria

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 21:26

KADUNA, Nigeria — Bomb blasts appearing to target former Nigerian military ruler Muhammadu Buhari and a prominent moderate Muslim cleric killed dozens of people Wednesday, but left both leaders unharmed, according to Nigerian state security.

At least 39 other people were killed in the two blasts, said State Police Commissioner Umar Usman Shehu. The death toll is expected to rise, as witnesses at both bomb sites said dozens of people were killed in each of the blasts.

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UN rights chief warns of possible Gaza war crimes

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 21:17

GENEVA — The U.N.'s top human rights official demanded Wednesday that all sides in the two-week war in the Gaza Strip refrain from indiscriminate attacks on civilians, warning that violations may amount to war crimes.

The warning by U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay came at a special meeting of the U.N.'s top human rights body, which voted 29-1 to authorize an international commission of inquiry to investigate all alleged abuses since mid-June in the Gaza Strip.

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40 bodies from jet solemnly returned to Dutch soil

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 21:03

EINDHOVEN, Netherlands — Victims of the Malaysian jetliner shot down over Ukraine returned at last Wednesday to Dutch soil in 40 wooden coffins, solemnly and gently carried to 40 identical hearses, flags at half-staff flapping in the wind.

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Sarah Palin cited for speeding in Alaska hometown

Latest from the Boston Herald - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 20:30

JUNEAU, Alaska — Sarah Palin is facing a $154 ticket for speeding in her hometown of Wasilla.

The former Alaska governor was pulled over July 16 and cited for driving between 10 and 19 mph over the speed limit.

The penalty includes a $144 fine and $10 police training surcharge.

An attorney for Palin said he didn't know details of the case but said that Palin would pay the fine. A Wasilla Police Department spokesman didn't immediately return a phone message seeking comment.

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